Stacie Orrico. Jars of Clay. Plus One. dc Talk. Out of Eden. These are the Christian musicians that filled much of my middle and high school years.
Then I began to discover more varied genres of music. Artists whose CDs did not appear in the “Christian” category at the store, but nevertheless sang of faith and doubt and questioning, themes that appeal to me strongly. Along the way, I began to think of music labeled as “Christian” as painting a picture of an easy faith, sunshine sparkles and rainbows, and avoiding the nitty gritty of life and faith. This was not the type of music I was interested in. Cheesy Christianity, I deemed it. The type I had no need for.
Last night I went to a Christian music concert. The show was well done, featuring a talented lineup of artists. Numerous times, I felt tears prick my eyes as I listened to songs that spoke of redemption, brokenness, hope, heartache, love, and most importantly, the faithfulness of God in whatever we go through.
These are the truths I need to hear.
They may not have been packaged in my preferred way. But they are so good. So important.
Sometimes I get caught up in what I deem “deeper” more “important” topics, reading, discussing, debating big questions Christians face, tossing around phrases like “sphere sovereignty” and “unconditional election” and “theology of culture.” These are important topics, worthy of study and thought; the side of me that likes to seek answers and know things is compelled to think, read about, and discuss these and others like them.
But when they overshadow truths like redemption, hope, love, and faithfulness, a little bit of “cheesy” is just what I need. “Cheesy” brings me back to the core of what being a Christian is about. If I lose sight of the goodness and importance of these basic truths, I have no right to discuss the big questions. Answers (if any answers to some of the things Christians debate exist) to complex questions must be grounded in the core beliefs I confess, otherwise they are simply my own thoughts, quite possibly misguided and incorrect.
Sometimes it takes things I have labeled “cheesy” to bring me back to what really matters.
Besides…I happen to really like cheese.
Til next time…
p.s. Have you ever dismissed anything in Christianity as “cheesy”? Why, and how did you handle it?